Energy Savers
Dry Tropics

Clare Horticulture and Cane

Proposed
12
Energy Savings
75.3
Savings
Industry
Horticulture & Cane
Product
Melons and Cane
Location
Dry Tropics
Irrigation
Drip, Flood
Pumps
Centrifugal
Technology
Refrigeration, Evaporator fans, Irrigation, Pump upgrade, Variable Speed Control, Solar hot water

Summary

This case study shows how a Clare melon farm an reduce energy consumption and costs implementing the recommendations of an Energy Savings Program. The farm has already implemented VSD on 8 pumps, reducing the energy consumption for irrigation by 49%. Further savings can be achieved by upgrading irrigation, refrigeration and hot water systems, with energy savings estimated as 12% of total farm energy consumption (these savings have been calculated discounting the reductions achieved through the upgrades already implemented).

The Energy Audit recommended 3 main groups of projects: refrigeration, irrigation and pump laser alignments. Refrigeration system improvements are reducing annual costs by nearly $10,000 with a payback just over three years. The first of a number of pumps to be laser aligned is saving $5,500 annually and similar improvements are being found with pump refurbishments and variable speed controls. Added benefits include emission reductions of 75.3 t CO2-e.

Farm Profile

The farm near Clare grows approximately 900 hectares of rockmelons and honeydew melons that are harvested from April through to December. The typical production mix on site is 65% rockmelons and 7% honeydew and 28% watermelons being integrated with cane production. The site includes a processing facility for the melons, which includes fruit sorting, packaging and cold storage.

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